nobel prize winner in literature, mr. bob dylan, penned the song “forever young.” later, rock and roll great, mr. rod stewart, also penned a song “forever young.” the stewart song was so familiar to mr. dylan’s song that mr. dylan is shared writing credits and royalties. one must wonder whether mr. dylan fleeced mr. stewart? was there someone else deserving of writing credits as well?
mr. bob dylan is one of the ultimate rock and roll legends. his songwriting skills are so great that others have taken his lyrics and music and made them their signature songs. where would the byrds be without bob dylan’s “mr. tambourine man?” where would mr. jimi hendrix be without bob dylan’s “all along the watch tower?”
a frustrating part of being a bob dylan fan is that he appears to bored with his music. he isn’t satified with getting a song right and singing it that way forever. he often mixes things up by changing the speed of a song. as such, there are both slow and fast versions of a number of his songs. this is also the case of his song, “forever young.” a song mr. dylan wrote for his son, jesse.
“forever young” with the line “may god bless you and keep you always.” this line is all too familiar with those knowing the torah. numbers 6:22-27, provides “the lord spoke to moses saying: speak to aaron and his sons, saying: this is how you shall bless the children of israel, saying to them: may the lord bless you and watch over you. may the lord cause his countenance to shine to you and favor you. may the lord raise his countenance toward you and grant you peace.”
mr. dylan, in penning “forever young”, adds additional wisdom and blessing. “may you always do for others and let others do for you” and “may you grow up to be righteous may you grow up to be true.” even more wisdom and blessing is offered with “may you have a strong foundation when the winds of changes shift.” finally, he adds “may your song always be sung.”
with this said, should the master of the universe get writing credit for mr. dylan divinely inspired lyrics? some royalties for the “big guy”? this is a difficult question to answer.
in light of mr. dylan poetic skills providing bibical wisdom and values in modern times, it is likely that the creator of the universe simply waive off any royalities and simply enjoy the song.
this brings us to mr. rod stewart. while sharing credits and sums monies with mr. dylan, perhaps he could have provided some credit to the mater. mr. stewart’s lyrics “forever young” includes “may the good lord be with you down every road you roam” and “may sunshine and happiness surround you when you are far from home.” while the song is a copy of a great one, mr. stewart’s lyrics are also touching and heartfelt. mr. stewart, unlike mr. dylan, will stick with a wonderful version of the song and stay with it.
in the end, “forever young,” either the dylan or stewart versions are a great listen.
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